9 Tips for Coping with a HurricaneWith another hurricane on the warpath up the East Coast of the U.S. this week, many people are scrambling for shelter and safety. Evacuations are taking place, and while everyone is rightfully focused on their physical safety, our emotional health is at risk during times of increased stress too. There are ways you can better cope emotionally with an impending hurricane — to brace yourself emotionally from the significant amounts of stress you’re about to endure.

One of the most important things to keep in mind is that a hurricane is a fairly short natural event. For most people, it means having to deal with a couple of days of moving out of the area and then moving back. While the effects of the hurricane may endure much longer — especially if your home was damaged or destroyed — the actual hurricane itself tends to move fairly quickly through each region.

The impact of having to deal with the significant damage of your home or even losing it altogether can be much greater than the stress of getting out of the hurricane’s path. People who lose part or all of their home go through a typical grief reactions — grieving the loss of all that they’ve accumulated or built.

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9 Tips for Coping with a Hurricane

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  1. Be sure to gather as much water as possible especially if you have a well instead of public water supply. Use every container you have, you will need it. You will need it to flush toilets, (do this sparingly – gross I know, but, you’ll be happy, I promise!), washing up, brushing teeth, cooking, (on the gas or coal grill), basic cleaning in the house, drinking water and any water needed for pets. I’m sure there’s more but, you can see how quickly it will be used! I say all this because it’s normal to lose electricity when there’s a hurricane. If you have a well, you have NO WATER! A well depends upon electricity to run. And be sure you know how to prime the pump when the electricity comes back on, too, else you’ll burn out the pump.

    Prior to the storm/hurricane, make as much ice as you can. You’ll need it when the refrigerator stops being cold. Don’t open it at all, unless it’s ABSOLUTELY necessary, and close it right away! Do *not* let kids stand there with the door open, looking for what they want to eat. Your food will spoil *very* quickly. The more the door is shut, the longer the refrigerator will stay cold.

    The same goes with the freezer. Leave it closed. Open it *only* when you need the ice you made in advance. That will be for the coolers you have to use when the refrigerator has finally gone warm, and you need to keep the food in the iced coolers. Blocks work better than cubes; cubes melt faster. You should keep the coolers in the shade and cover them with canvas or tarps for more insulation, too.

    Do you have oil lamps? They work better than flashlights for night time sitting, reading, talking, playing games, cards, puzzles, etc. Remember, there’s no tv, internet, stereo, etc…. You’ll have to find alternative entertainment. Stock up now if you don’t already have some fun things to do, or good books to read.

    But, do have flashlights! Have enough for each person’s bedroom. If someone gets up in the middle of the night to go to the bathroom, there are no lights, remember? Have a flashlight near the bed, within easy reach, so no one is stumbling and smashing their toes! :>)

    Did you stock up on batteries?? Get plenty! You don’t know how long you’ll be out of power…

    I, personally dislike candles for storms. Too much of a danger, (especially if you have animals, like I do). That’s me. You can decide for yourself.

    Keep foods that do not *need* to be in the refrigerator OUT of it. There’s no need to waste the cold of the frige opening it if it’s not necessary.

    Finally, make this an adventure! :>))
    Have cookouts on the grill, for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Invite neighbors over to join you. After a few days, some of the food in your refrigerator freezer will begin to thaw, most likely, so, you may as well have a party with friends and neighbors.

    Enjoy the peace and quiet…it’s a beautiful thing!!!
    (Until the neighbors turn on their generators, anyway…) :>(

    Hope this is helpful to some….
    And I really hope the storm misses us or is downgraded to just a storm. In any case, be careful. Don’t do foolish things, like going surfing because the waves are “cool.” Safety first and always!

    But, enjoy the adventure!

    Peace!

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